by STIRworldDec 09, 2020
In the quiet forests of Salamajärvi National Park, Niliaitta cabin is perched on a single column, shrouded in greenery. Studio Puisto’s homage to Finland’s vernacular architecture, Niliaitta cabin is inspired from its namesake, a kind of a traditional building in Lapland that was originally used by Sámi people as a safe place to store food outdoors and keep it protected from bears and other wild animals.
Niliaitta cabin is one of the three types of accommodation available at Kivijärvi Resort, a resort that aims to provide ecologically sensitive solutions to nature tourists who prefer high-quality places to stay. The resort has three main solutions to adapt to different types of habitats and landscapes. The design process has been guided by the surroundings, the spirit of the place, and the experience of silence filling the space around the cabins. "Above all, it was imperative that the rich nature was kept as untouched as possible and that any buildings would be grounded upon these very aspects of nature, making them complementary additions to the area," mentions Studio Puisto.
Some of the other designs include accommodations that are rooted in the ground, which grow and strengthen from within, while others float on water and draw in scents of the lake and the reflections of light on the water’s surface. The Niliaitta cabin prototype is lifted in the air to give the patrons a sense of being away from the chaos of fast-paced lifestyles. It also invokes a feeling of being detached to everything on the ground while the interiors provide a cosy and safe feeling inside the cabin. The resort is set to have 50 new accommodation units for the area with an additional sauna and conference centre building designed for the shoreline, which will partially float over water. The buildings of the resort will be oriented towards a bonfire on an island in the lake which will act as a central physical orientation point for the space as well.
Inside the Niliaitta prototype, the ceiling height is the length of an entire wall. What this does is that it allows for a completely unobstructed view of the surroundings and the landscape that opens out from its window. The interiors have been purposefully left neutral in their tones for them to be a blank canvas for the surroundings of the cabin.
The striking feature of the cabin - the single column stand - has been put in place to maintain minimal contact with the vegetation below, and post construction the forest terrain was restored to its original state. The cabin’s position has been strategically planned so as to ensure that the least amount of trees get felled in the process.
The studio has made sure the materials used for the cabin are environmentally conscious with wood being the primary material for the interior surfaces, eco-wool used for insulation, and plastic being avoided in the structure. The wooden interiors also provide healthy breathing air for the indoors and pleasant acoustics. The softness of the acoustics has been influenced by modern angular finger panelling on the walls.
The bathroom, showers and a kitchenette have all been made with the quality of a modern hotel room in mind. These amenities are housed in a rotating core in the middle of a cabin that also has the ventilation unit, air source heat pump, water heater, and electrical switchboard. Having all the tech and facilities in one place also allows for minimal interruption on the interior walls, and help maintain the clean look of the cabin. In addition, the water, sewer pipes and electrical cables all run to the Niliaitta prototype under the external staircase in an enclosure, similarly creating a clean exterior as well.